Birthday Getaway in Cancun, Mexico
Cancun can be considered the party capital or the Las Vegas of Mexico. I'll be the first to tell you it is not my favorite place in Mexico, however I wanted to run it back and mildly channel my inner spring break for my 40th birthday. No matter what time of year you visit, if you’re planning to spend some time in Cancun, I wanted to recap our experience.
Before taking off be sure to take a photo of the inside and outside of your luggage. I do this as a precautionary measure for all my trips.
Airport Shuttle, choose Happy Shuttle
Taking a taxi is what most tourists do, but beware that the Yucatan has a “taxi mafia” that charges high prices whenever they think they can get away with it. Put your mind at ease and book Happy Shuttle before you land! With one of the best ratings on TripAdvisor they are honestly the cleanest, easiest and best transportation in Cancun.
To book head to their website:
After you get through customs, which was now automated and took 10 minutes, grab your bag and head outside to find the lime green shirts. Happy Shuttle will provide you with a confirmation email and exact directions to find their team. We checked in with Nadia, got a return pick up time confirmation, got in the van with our amazing driver Wilber and away we went. Each shuttle could fit around 8-10 people. Best way to kick off your vacation-Friendly, organized and stress free!
Plan accordingly for the best time at the pool. Bring your sunscreen if you can because it is triple the price at the resorts. Pool Floats, Ice Shaker Insulated Tumbler & sunscreen were key click here to see options
Luggage and luggage cover to assist with cleanliness and as a safety cover Click here
Beach towel clips to save chairs early, iPhone charger, iPhone waterproof case, & toiletry accessories click here
Best beach Dress Options click here
A lot of $1 & $5 for tips
Grand Oasis Cancun Mexico is an all-inclusive resort located in the heart of Cancun's Hotel Zone. The resort boasts a beautiful beachfront location, stunning pools, and a variety of dining options. However, I have to start with two cliches, "you get what you pay for" & "money talks."
Once we arrived at the hotel around 11:30am, we stood in line with about 10 groups in front of us, which took about 45 minutes. Mexico always seemed to have fees here and there and we had to pay a $28 environmental fee at check in. Our room was not ready and had to come back around 3pm. Highly suggest packing a carry on with sunscreen, swimsuit and change of clothes.
In the meantime we stopped into Cocoa, poolside restaurant for lunch before we hit the beach. The view was great and I suggest ordering the chips & guacamole, fish quesadillas & fish tacos. At La Pita Poolside, grab and go lunch, we liked the chicken nuggets and tacos for a quick bite.
Finally got our room keys at 2:45pm and we were taken to our room by the bellman. We had blue wristbands but unsure if the upgrade to black would have been worth it. The room was just ok, not a great view, no comforter, you have to pay extra for the safe and our fridge was not filled upon arrival.
We unpacked and made our way to the concierge table. We booked Benazuza for my birthday, and Sekura another day (both $65 per person & both fantastic). Highly recommend booking all of the restaurants you want to visit immediately upon arrival as they "fill up." I put that in quotes because they were "full" as per the concierge but when we showed up with a $20 at the steakhouse we got in each time.
The resort has over 20 restaurants and bars, ranging from casual to fine dining. Some of the most popular dining options include Benazuza, which offers molecular gastronomy, and The White Box, which serves Mediterranean cuisine. Other dining options include sushi, Mexican, Italian, and more. There are two free buffet options which were pretty poor. Tanish was the worst of the two. Each morning we would go to Coffee&Me then Tun Kul to get omelettes as not much else was appetizing.
This restaurant was recommended to me from a previous guest and I am glad we went for my birthday. Benazuza is the recipient of a 2021 Travelers' Choice Best of the Best award winner for Best Fine Dining. This once-in-a-lifetime dining experience features a set menu of culinary masterpieces, created by two-star Michelin chef Rafael Zafra, and is included for guests staying at The Pyramid at Grand Oasis. We were so impressed with our 15+ course meal at Benazuza! It was a great experience for any food lover and not to mention one of the best deals. From a pina colada in a form of an egg to the steak medallions that melted in your mouth it was an unreal spot.
After our meal ended Alberto, our server, presented us with the menu as a souvenir. Thank goodness because I really could not remember everything I ate!
We made reservations with the concierge for this adults only Japanese restaurant. Excited for habachi, we were told the habachi chef did not come into work. Disappointed at first, Marco our server was the absolute best on the resort! He had multiple recommendations & was like a sushi sommelier! There was an upbeat vibe with a DJ, and dance and bongo performance during dinner. Overall outstanding from start to finish!
The resort has a pretty beachfront location, with crystal clear waters and soft white sand with some seaweed. Guests can enjoy activities close by like parasailing and jet skiing. The water was very choppy, so be careful swimming. There are loungers and umbrellas to relax and soak up the sun. Security and lifeguards are on duty but always keep an eye on your surroundings and belongings.
The resort has a handful of pools, including a main pool and a beachfront infinity pool. The pools are surrounded by loungers and cabanas, which get reserved pretty early in the morning. I suggest buying the towel clips listed above so you can secure your area early. There is a very busy swim-up bar for guests to enjoy drinks while in the water. Not many servers circle the pool, but we did find the amazing Neary! For a couple hours a day at the main pool he would serve us as we would tip him to grab us some cocktails while we floated.
Daytime Bottle Service:
We met some amazing people at the pool and saw the main stage was planning color party around 4pm. You can find most activities in the Oasis Hotels App.
The color party could be considered like the largest gender reveal party so we thought it would be fun to grab a cabana area and a bottle. A bottle of vodka was only $116 with mixers. We had a riot for a couple hours there and watched contests and experienced the color war.
The Privlege Tour to Isla Mujeres
I have been to Cancun a few times, but never made it to Isla Mujeres. This tour is a must do and was the perfect birthday boat tour!
Or more info:
Privilege Tour to Isla Mujeres | Experiencias Cancun
Tell them I sent you!
Click here for more information on our Experiencias Cancun Tour! Check out the blog post:
The Ultimate Isla Mujeres Excursion
Isla Mujeres, is a small island is only 20 minutes from Cancun or Hotel Zone.
This island offers stunning views thanks to its rocky coast and gorgeous bays. It is also the first spot where you can see the sunrise in Mexico. The quaint village offers a well-deserved pause from the crazy nightlife of Cancun.
Return Airport Transfer:
Happy shuttle arrived at the Oasis right on time to take us back to the airport. Fernando walked up to find us and grabbed our bags to take us safely to the terminal.
There are lots of great options here to create a wonderful Cancun experience for you, a group of friends or as a couple. Whether you’re celebrating a 40th birthday, romantic anniversary, or simply treating yourself, Cancun is always fun spot!
Previous Blog Posts from Cancun:
Link to a Cancun Destination Wedding & getting off the resort
Link to an Ultimate Excursion to Ik Kil & Chichen Itza